Shark Tank India 2: By not investing in Recode did the Shark show their short-sightedness?

Maybe in the next year or two Recode’s Bansal and More too could get the same treatment and one or two Sharks may feel that they have made a mistake by denying them an investment.

Shark Tank India
Sharks and the owners of the Recode Dheeraj Bansal and Rahul More

In the second episode of the Shark Tank India season 2 the owners or the partners or the directors of Recode, Dheeraj Bansal and Rahul More literary stole the show. But just like them the Sharks who came from a humble backgrounds either couldn’t understand these two friends’ business ideas or they were actually feeling jealous of them because of their simple and desi strategy to earn profit. I don’t see any other reason for the Sharks to deny investment where the fundamentals are strong.

I am not a man of statistics or business, but the way those two gentlemen have developed their business and the way they have gathered people to sell their products by giving them training in five-star properties with free lunch, I felt that this is a pure Indian way to get the business done.

But on this free lunch thing, most of the Sharks were laughing as if they have heard a joke. Apart from this basic thing those two friends also informed us that they sold their entire product range for just one rupee after the COVID time on the Marketplace (probably a Facebook platform). Even this core desi business sense was questioned by the Shark Tank Sharks.

When Mr. Bansal and Mr. More explained this all the Sharks of Shark Tank India were looking at them with eyes of pure sympathy. On the other hand, those two friends were actually feeling proud of what they did because they have retained many of those clients to whom they sold their products for just one rupee, and these are the actual reasons for their success. Both Bansal and More said that because of their Marketplace strategy, they are now getting repeat orders.

Just by using common business sense and turning it into a big business success and not using the knowledge they might have gotten from top management schools of India, these two entrepreneurs were denied any financial help by all of the Sharks of the Shark Tank India 2. Two Sharks said that they can’t gulp the strategy adopted by the Recode owners, whereas the other two said that because they are friends with another Shark who is Recode’s competitor they don’t want to invest.

The remaining Shark, the competitor explained the obvious reason why not to invest in Recode. But personally, I felt, while watching that episode that all the Sharks failed to understand the basic and simple business sense of Mr. Bansal and Mr. More.

It wasn’t that the Recode owners were asking for investment based on airy-fairy claims; they have actually shown the statistics showing their big profits. By trusting those profit numbers at least one of the Sharks should have come forward and invested in them. The irony is that at the start of the same episode, the program showed the visit of two lady Sharks to a village in Chhattisgarh where the Jha Jee pickle brand is popular.

This brand has been administered by a pair of sisters-in-law and they were also denied the investment by the Sharks in the first season of Shark Tank India by doubting their abilities just like the Recode owners faced. The Jha Jee pair too explained their common and simple business sense while pitching their products before the Sharks. They asked for an investment of Rs. 50 lakh from the Sharks at that time

But, later two of the five Sharks realized their mistake and went to Chhattisgarh just before the start of the second season and invested Rupees 80 lakhs in Jha Jee. So the question here is who is smarter? The Sharks who have earned millions and now investing more after realizing their mistake or the simple people like Jha Jee’s sisters-in-law who carry basic Indian business sense?

Maybe in the next year or two Recode’s Bansal and More too could get the same treatment and one or two Sharks may feel that they have made a mistake by denying them investment and go to Recode’s office and invest more money than what it was asked for this time. A person like me who doesn’t carry any type of business sense loved the strategy which is simple yet intelligent and core to the Indian business sense.

Sometimes when a person comes from a humble background and ‘reaches the riches’ and becomes a business Shark he forgets that he had the same simple yet effective business sense when he started his struggle as the person standing in front of him can also have. Just because the person is running the business with simple and basic understanding doesn’t mean that he is less intelligent because now we are at the top.

Bansal and More probably denied investment because most of the Sharks forget that they were at the same position just a few years back. But the way these two guys have developed their business, hats off to them. Maybe this simplicity and basic understanding of business will make these two business Sharks in the future. Who knows we may see Dheeraj Bansal and Rahul More as two Sharks of the Shark Tank India in the next ten years.

Till we meet next it’s Avjo from me!

5th January 2023, Thursday




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